Eye to Eye National
- New York
50 Broad Street
We are the only national mentoring movement that pairs kids who have learning disabilities and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (LD / ADHD) with college and high school mentors who have been similarly labeled. Using our arts-based curriculum, mentors help their mentees understand their unique way of learning and thinking, building self-esteem and skills they need to become self-advocates. We currently have 60 chapters in 18 States.
Eye to Eye's mission is to improve the life of every person with a learning disability. We fulfill our mission by supporting and growing a network of youth mentoring programs run by and for those with learning differences, and by organizing advocates to support the full inclusion of people with learning disabilities and ADHD in all aspects of society.
Our vision is simple yet bold: to create a world in which people with LD / ADHD are fully accepted, valued, and respected -- not just by society, but also by themselves -- and that they live free from second thoughts or worry, ready, able, and eager to apply their unique strengths to whatever they encounter in life.
Self-acceptance begins and ends with confidence. In order to develop that confidence, however, students need to feel safe. The conversations we have in the Eye to Eye Art Room create and fortify the safe space and make our movement truly unique.
Mentors talk openly and bravely about their experiences. Mentees realize they are not alone, sometime for the very first time. They see someone who was once just like they are today. More importantly, they see someone they hope to be tomorrow. And yet our art projects can't last forever. Mentors and mentees must leave the safe space they've created together and return to a world that is often unable or unwilling to accept their way of learning.
Our response to this situation draws its power from the strength of our movement. We are determined to expand the safe space of our art rooms into society at large by normalizing LD / ADHD through open and honest conversation.
Government estimates indicate that up to 20% of the US population has LD / ADHD, and that it can be found in every age group, socio-economic category, race, gender, sexual orientation, and geography. This statistic may come as a surprise to those outside the LD / ADHD community, but it's a fact that can no longer be ignored. We aspire to build support systems not just among those of us with LD / ADHD, but also among those who care about us, teach us, work with us, and can effect social change on our behalf.
Our local chapters, the Think Different Diplomats, our national office, and our social media efforts serve as a dynamic, multi-front advocacy effort. We're determined to show others that having LD / ADHD is as perfectly normal as having blue eyes or brown hair -- yet another aspect of human individuality to be recognized, embraced, and -- yes -- even celebrated.
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